First Articulation: Red-Tailed Hawk
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benjhind
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« on: February 01, 2011, 10:26:10 PM »

Hey folks,

I thought I'd post a build thread on my first articulation.  Before anybody jumps on me, I'm in Canada and have the paperwork for this bird.

Any suggestions would be appreciated.  I have limited time to devote to this, so it might take a while to complete.  The articulation is already suffering somewhat because there is some damage to the skeleton as the bird was hit by a car.

Here is where I am so far:

Just for the heck of it, pic of the skull:



Spine and right wing sorted:



Right leg sorted, left digits and skull pieces in bag:



I sorted left from right by keeping them in separated during maceration by bagging them with pantyhose.

Ribcage assembled:



Are the scapulas supposed to be angled back more?  They stayed attached to the coracoids during maceration, so I left them in that position.
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staffs-skeletons
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« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2011, 03:36:46 AM »

Looking good so far! Always wise to clean them separatley - especially the toes and wings.
Only thing is as you say -  the scapulas should really be lying along the top of the ribs.
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benjhind
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« Reply #2 on: February 02, 2011, 08:15:29 AM »

Okay that is great info, thanks.  Should the coracoids be angled back more as well?
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Wouter
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« Reply #3 on: February 02, 2011, 10:59:28 AM »

Hi Ben,

Your coracoids are probably in the right place, although it is difficult to see in the picture. If they have a snug fit with the sternum they should be OK. To check whether they are set at the right angle towards eachother, try whether the furcula fits in between them. You'l have to separate the scapulas from the coracoids, the drying of the cartilage caused the wrong angle. Then you can glue them back on the corocoid and the top of the ribs.
I noticed at the picture with the laid-out leg bones, you put the first digit of the inner toe at the knee. You may have mistake it for the knee cap, but it really is a toe bone.
Good luck with the rest of the project. I'm looking forward to your results

Wouter

PS: good cleaning work!
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Great Skulls?
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« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2011, 11:25:41 AM »

For those of you who don't know him Wouter is a ridiculously accomplished bird guy.  If you need help with your birds, you couldn't ask for a better authority (though "PA" certainly knows his stuff too!).

Wouter, could you post the URL for your website again?
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Wouter
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« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2011, 12:00:35 PM »

Sure I can, it is: www.skullsite.com.
On this site there are two hawk skeletons, which were the first skeletons I ever built. Both have a mistake: the inner and outer toes are mixed up (shame, shame). My cousin Jan, wo built the website, had a lot of work making these revolving pictures, that's why we never redid them after correcting the mistake in the skeletons. The vulture has correct toes.

Wouter
 
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wheelchair
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« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2011, 02:19:29 PM »

Could you explain how you put the rib cage together? I've tried a few birds and always have trouble with the ribs. The glues i've used don't seem to set fast enough and the ribs fall out of position.
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benjhind
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« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2011, 02:38:04 PM »

Wouter, you have a very good eye.

I did indeed have that placed there as the patella.  However, the bones were sorted months ago and the trays have been bumped many times, so that is how it must have gotten mixed up... I'll take a look at my Lee Post book when I get home.  Thanks for pointing it out!

I use what is called a "third hand".  I'll try to put in a picture below:



I put some electrical heat-shrink over the clips so that they don't mark the bone.  I'm not sure what I will use to hold the larger bones in place while the glue dries... any suggestions?
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benjhind
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« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2011, 08:22:15 PM »

Hi Wouter,

I took a look at the bones.  I'm going by Lee Post's book, and I have the foot laid out and it has all the same bones that are illustrated.  That's why I had assumed that the last piece was the patella... Lee's book does not give a good picture of the patella, but it does say "if present" so I'm assuming that not all birds have one? 

I took some closer photos.  They don't look yellow in reality.  Let me know what you think.  I tried to fit it between the accesory metatarsus and the first phalanx of the hind toe without success... I'm not really sure where it goes!





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Wouter
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« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2011, 09:34:14 AM »

Hello Ben,

Unknowingly, Lee Post based his bird building book on a bird species which is a rare exception of the "Rule of the Toes": going from toe 1 (hind) to 4 (outer), each toe has a bone more than the previous, 2-3-4-5. In Lees eagle, the two bones of the second toe are fused. Try fitting the two bones we discussed together, and compare to Lees very detailed drawing, and you'll see what I mean. Apparently, this is normal in Haliaeetus eagles, because besides Lees specimen, two skeletons I cleaned myself (a bald and a white-tailed eagle) had the same fused second toe. In other birds, including other raptors, this is very unusual, I found it only twice. In all others, the two bones were separate.
I helped Lee with his bird manual, and I informed him of this un usual characteristic of his demo bird. Maybe he'll add a remark on it in the next print.

Wouter 
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tslabaugh
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« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2011, 06:19:13 PM »

I thought I was the only one that used a McDonalds tray to put together skulls and stuff!
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benjhind
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« Reply #11 on: February 03, 2011, 10:04:09 PM »

Okay, I'm really glad I started this thread because I'm learning a lot.

I'd like to point out that the picture Wouter first pointed out what this bone was from a tiny picture where it just looks like a piece of popcorn.

I was confused and thought he was saying it belonged on the hind toe.  Here is a picture showing where it belongs on the second toe for reference, it fits like a glove:



Now, I have a bunch of bones that I'm a bit confused about.  I have glued the tongue together to resemble the photos in Jean-Christophe's thread, but I'm not sure if it is right.



The top left bone might be a patella... as I had one in each "half" of the bird.  The H shaped bone might be part of the tongue?  The lowest bone looks like it might go over the tip of the tongue or something...  I have no idea where the matching triangles go... presumably somewhere on the skull... one of them just will not come white!

Any ideas on the mystery bones?
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benjhind
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« Reply #12 on: February 03, 2011, 10:06:06 PM »

Oh, and tslabaugh, those are not McDonalds trays.  If you look at the pictures, you will see that they have the letter 'W' on them.  The bottom picture shows a '3'.  McDonalds has neither a 'W' or a '3' as a symbol.
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Wouter
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« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2011, 10:42:34 AM »

Hi Ben,

The H-shaped bone is indeed part of the tongue, the point of the tongue bones fits in between the wider ends of the H-bone

The flat triangular pieces fit on the eyebrows:


Augur Buzzard from www.skullsite.com

The flat pointy bone is the vomer, it fits in the middle of the palate:


White-tailed eagle from www.skullsite.com

The bone you thought to be the patella indeed is.

The shield shaped bone is not part of the skeleton, it is the entrance to the windpipe.

I hope this helps,

Wouter
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benjhind
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« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2011, 08:46:27 PM »

Once again Wouter, my humble thanks for your time and wisdom!

I had actually wedged the vomer in the correct location, but wasn't sure whether that was where it should go.

Could you please have a look at this tongue to see what you think?  It looks very different from the fowl tongues in Jean-Christophe's thread, but I realize these are quite different animals.



Thanks,
Ben
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